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  #1  
Old 11-27-2006
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New Welder Question?

Ok guys. Finally got some scratch together, and damn it, I'm buying a Welder. I've talked to a couple different people who weld (1 does it for a living) and the basic concensus I've gotten is that if I'm serious about learning to weld and building things with it (which I am) get something that will hold up and last. And from there I've been told that a Millermatic would be the way to go. So after looking around a bit I think I've decided on the Millermatic 210 (LINK). It ain't cheap, but people have told that is a really good welder.

2 questions for you guys however.

1) Do you guys think this is a good idea for someone who has never welded before to spend that much?

2) If not, do you have any suggestions about brands for the cheaper welders? If yes, then do you know if that's all I'm going to need to buy or am I going to need to buy some accesories?
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Old 11-27-2006
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Definitely buy the best machine you can afford. Smaller and less expensive machines will not be able to weld thicker matterial and depending on what you are looking to build, the smaller machines may not be up to the task. Also, the better machines will usually give you cleaner power and more adjustability which will make it much less frustrating to learn.

Regarding accessories, you will need a shielding gas bottle and gas. I would suggest finding someone who will lease you the bottle rather than buying it. The initial cash spent is much less and you always know where to get the bottle filled. I have dealt with some companies that will not fill a bottle unless it's one of theirs. You will also need a shield and gloves. Leather welding gloves are your best bet. I've tried using Mechanics' gloves and they burn thru too easily.

For the shield, again get the best you can afford. Make sure that what you get is made for the type of welding you will do because you would need a different lens for ARC than for MIG or TIG. If you can spend the cash on an auto-darkening helmet, definitely do it but don't buy a cheap one. I have a $50 auto darkening shield from Harbor Freight that works well but I get some halo-ing after long periods with it whereas there are no after-effects with my Jackson.
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Old 11-27-2006
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i've got a craftsman for sell myself, but i can tell you right now it's a beginners level mig welder and has only 2 heat adjustments, which are high amp and low amp...

it's great for beginners and small projects. here's a link to it

http://www.sears.com/sr/javasr/produ...seBVCookie=Yes

it's in no way a serious welder if you're trying to make a living from it, but if you're just welding on small projects and stuff, i've found that it's great....it's only about 6 months old and i've used it maybe 9 or 10 times...

requires no shielding gas and runs of 110 house current so you can plug it in out in your garage, or even run an extension cord outside and use it.
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  #4  
Old 11-27-2006
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i use a Hobart 140 mig.. rated for 1/4 steel and thinner and still uses standard 110 outlets
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Old 11-27-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big04Ranger
i use a Hobart 140 mig.. rated for 1/4 steel and thinner and still uses standard 110 outlets

that's what i'm gettin ready to upgrade too!! bad *** welder!
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  #6  
Old 11-27-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big04Ranger
i use a Hobart 140 mig.. rated for 1/4 steel and thinner and still uses standard 110 outlets

i want something similar but with 220 outlet as i think it has a higher duty cyle rating which is nice.

something like the ironman 210 or handler 187

http://www.hobartwelders.com/products/mig/

but heck im a pretty crappy welder right now, i need more practice.
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  #7  
Old 11-27-2006
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just takes alot practice and few ( 5 - 10 ) spools of cheap wire to get good...

just remember to make the heel equal the metal thickness and stack the dimes
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Old 11-27-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sad_Savant
just takes alot practice and few ( 5 - 10 ) spools of cheap wire to get good...

just remember to make the heel equal the metal thickness and stack the dimes

we have an arc welder at home, which is what i am learning to weld with, on 1/4 plate and 7018(i think) rods.
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  #9  
Old 11-27-2006
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Definitely go for a 220volt machine. Much less frustrating. I used D's 220 hobart and did some pretty nice welds but I have a 110 Lincoln (both fluxcore machines) and it is much more difficult. You have to crank it way up to get good penetration and it tends to splatter a lot. You will have much more sucess with the 220 machine.

I have a stick welder at home that is 220 and I run it off a generator wherever I want. The most common rod for this is a 6011 rod. I even packed it down to Wink's place to aid in installing his lift in the Bronco.
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  #10  
Old 11-27-2006
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1. Learning to weld is a great thing!!!! buying ur own welder is the best thing
2. ... its all on how much u want to spend for the type of welding machine u want
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  #11  
Old 11-27-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shadyluke
Definitely go for a 220volt machine. Much less frustrating. I used D's 220 hobart and did some pretty nice welds but I have a 110 Lincoln (both fluxcore machines) and it is much more difficult. You have to crank it way up to get good penetration and it tends to splatter a lot. You will have much more sucess with the 220 machine.

I have a stick welder at home that is 220 and I run it off a generator wherever I want. The most common rod for this is a 6011 rod. I even packed it down to Wink's place to aid in installing his lift in the Bronco.


you need to weld with gas.... night and day differance.. i used my buddys el cheapo mig when i welded my rear bumper on.. those that came to the indy meet can vouch for how it will never come off. his is rated for maybe 1/8... i filled in 1/2 and got awsome penitration.. most of the steel was 3/16(used flux-core as well)


all in all you can weld just about anything you want with any welder if you learn how to make it weld such things.... that and lots of practice
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  #12  
Old 11-27-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big04Ranger
Quote:
Originally Posted by shadyluke
Definitely go for a 220volt machine. Much less frustrating. I used D's 220 hobart and did some pretty nice welds..


you need to weld with gas.... night and day differance.. i used my buddys el cheapo mig when i welded my rear bumper on.. those that came to the indy meet can vouch for how it will never come off. his is rated for maybe 1/8... i filled in 1/2 and got awsome penitration.. most of the steel was 3/16(used flux-core as well
Has gas :) Argon :) Good stuff. Just need to refill it.

I haven't been welding long ( Maybe 4 years? ). Theres a HUGE difference in having the extra amps and gas. I havent had the need to use a lot of gas at being on a 220/100 amp service, the machine has all the juice it needs and burns pretty good.

Rudy used it when we made Joe's leafs here this past spring/summer. Hes been fabricating for a while and said it was an ' ok ' machine.

I have a WW2 Lincon stick welder as well :) . Its built like a sherman tank and won't fail.
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  #13  
Old 11-27-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big04Ranger
you need to weld with gas.... night and day differance.. i used my buddys el cheapo mig when i welded my rear bumper on.. those that came to the indy meet can vouch for how it will never come off. his is rated for maybe 1/8... i filled in 1/2 and got awsome penitration.. most of the steel was 3/16(used flux-core as well)


all in all you can weld just about anything you want with any welder if you learn how to make it weld such things.... that and lots of practice
I weld more with gas than I do fluxcore. We have heavy duty stuff here at school. MIG TIG and Stick all running off of 460 or 480 volts whatever it is. I know what a difference gas makes. I also know that 220 makes a huge difference over 110. I wouldn't think twice about it and buy the 220. For a beginer it will make life that much easier.
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  #14  
Old 11-28-2006
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how can you power a 220 volt welder at home? I know it's a silly question but I'm just learning to weld and i've been thinking about getting my own machine too.
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  #15  
Old 11-28-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gearhead61
how can you power a 220 volt welder at home? I know it's a silly question but I'm just learning to weld and i've been thinking about getting my own machine too.

basically just run the wiring from your breaker box and install an outlet for a washer or dryer...alot of those are the 220's...
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  #16  
Old 11-28-2006
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Originally Posted by Gearhead61
how can you power a 220 volt welder at home? I know it's a silly question but I'm just learning to weld and i've been thinking about getting my own machine too.
I have dual service on the property here. Theres a 100amp service to the house on one feed, and a 100amp service to the garage/shop. Both are on sepperate systems and have sepperate electrical bills every month.
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  #17  
Old 11-28-2006
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My suggestion would be, take a welding class and see if that's what you want to do before shelling out cash. Some people like to weld and some don't. If you can't find a welding class try a tech school that has body shop classes in the evenings.
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  #18  
Old 11-28-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gearhead61
how can you power a 220 volt welder at home? I know it's a silly question but I'm just learning to weld and i've been thinking about getting my own machine too.
Like Sad_savant said, you basically have to make a special outlet. I'm going to be rewiring my garage soon (and when I say I mean I'm going to watch someone who knows what the hell they are doing do it ) so that won't be a problem. Thanks for all the tips guys. Didn't expect to see this big of a response.
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  #19  
Old 11-28-2006
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lincoln weld-pak 3200hd is an excellent welder for a 110 outlet
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  #20  
Old 11-28-2006
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i run gas on my hobart... last resort is the only time i use flux-core


i use the 110 cause i dont feel like the hastle of rewiring my moms garage..lol
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  #21  
Old 01-04-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gearhead61
how can you power a 220 volt welder at home? I know it's a silly question but I'm just learning to weld and i've been thinking about getting my own machine too.
house services come into your breaker box with 3 wires...2 120v hot legs and a ground. each side of the break box gets a 120 leg. any drier or stove that uses 240v gets both 120v hot legs combined giving 240v. so to get 240 in say, your garage, you need to tap onto each leg and run them to the garage.

in our garage we ran a 240v in-house service from the main panel. same thing in the garage, it splits to 2 120v legs so we can do the lighting and outlets, and also power the welder+air compressor on 240v.
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  #22  
Old 01-04-2007
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^^^buy a 2 pole breaker.depending on the amount of amps will determin what size wire to go with.
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  #23  
Old 01-05-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Biz
^^^buy a 2 pole breaker.depending on the amount of amps will determin what size wire to go with.
you can indeed do that and just run wire from the breaker to the garage or wherever the welder will be. it will now have its own dedicated circuit.
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  #24  
Old 01-05-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sad_Savant
that's what i'm gettin ready to upgrade too!! bad *** welder!

those are like the hummer of welders
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  #25  
Old 01-05-2007
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If you were closer to columbus ohio, i would sell you my LIncoln welder, its going for a HELL of a deal.....

PM me if interested

Rocky
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